News

World Bank's Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) Launched with Ivanka Trump, Donors

Just three months ago, at the G20 leaders’ summit in Hamburg, Germany,the creation of We-Fi, an innovative new facility to advance women’s entrepreneurship and help women in developing countries increase their access to the finance, markets, technology, and networks necessary to start and grow a business, was announced.

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News

Member News: Fawry Adds Mobile Payments
The Financial Times features SME Finance Forum member Fawry. Ashraf Sabry, founder and chief executive officer of Fawry, the Egypt’s oldest and biggest electronic payments company, has ambitious plans that would see Egypt’s mostly unbanked population of 94 million people carry out a broad range of financial transactions on their mobile phones...
Small Businesses are Burying Their Heads in the Sand Over Cyber Security
A survey by Enterprise Nation says a fifth of small British companies say they still don't know how to protect themselves from potential online business risks. Released on behalf of domain firm Go Daddy, a quarter said they had experienced phishing emails and yet less than half (47%) said their website was on a secure platform. Retail was the...
Spotcap Has Now Provided €120 Million in SME Credit Lines
In three years, online lender Spotcap has issued more than €120 million in credit lines to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The fintech also raised an additional €22 million of funding from its existing investor network. It has now raised €100 million of investment since its launch in September 2014. Jens Woloszczak, Spotcap Founder and...
Member News: Ecobank Adds Cardless Cash Withdrawal
As the vanguard of financial inclusion, Ecobank is striving to address the needs of the unbanked by transforming a mobile phone into an all-in-one bank account and payment/cash withdrawal tool. One such example is the innovative Xpress Cash functionality, which has been introduced as part of its upgraded mobile banking app. Xpress Cash allows...
Member News: Diamond Bank Partners with Women World Banking for Financial Inclusion
About 40 million people unbanked are in Nigeria, with 60 percent being women. As the most financially excluded, this partnership aims to bring more women into the financial system, especially how to make digital financial services work for low-income women. SME Finance Forum member Diamond Bank Plc, in collaboration with mobile telecomm network...
Brazil's Central Bank Proposes Rules for Fintechs, Peer-to-Peer Lending
Brazil’s central bank recently proposed allowing fintechs to lend money, without taking deposits as commercial banks do, as part of new rules for the fast-growing fintech industry in Latin America’s largest economy, according to reports. The rules, which will be assessed in public hearings over the next two months, should not require congressional...
PayPal to Acquire Swift Financial
PayPal has agreed to acquire Swift Financial, a leading provider of working capital solutions to small businesses in the U.S. Headquartered in Wilmington, Del., Swift Financial was established in 2006 to provide funding in order to support businesses. Since then, Swift has provided funding to thousands of growing companies in the U.S. through a...
National Australia Bank Builds SME Lending Features
The National Australia Bank (NAB) is looking to build business outside of home loans, mostly in SME lending. A recent report in The Australian revealed news that the NAB is adding new features to its small business lending unit, QuickBiz, in an effort to build market share. According to reports, NAB is rolling out an extension of the online...
Member News: Strands Expands in the United States with Huntington Bank on Board
Having collaborated on 600 product implementations with banks in some 36 countries to date, Strands’ rapid global expansion has now grown to incorporate an ambitious venture with U.S.-based bank, Huntington National Bank, reaffirming its presence in the North American market with the only fully-customizable digital money management solution in the...
Kenya’s biggest bank by customer numbers, Equity Bank, has closed 11 ATM lobbies, each of which had multiple cash dispensing machines. This is the lender’s effort to shift customers to alternative channels such as agency and mobile banking in a fresh cost-cutting strategy. Equity’s chief executive James Mwangi said ATMs require upfront capital...